In the history of real estate market of India, the year 2017 would go down as the year of unpredictability. All the rules and policy changes initiated by the government, have shaken up the real estate sector in the short-term and there seems confusion galore. The regulatory changes promised transparency to the buyers, however, on the ground this is far from the truth as the builders themselves are unsure regarding the implementation of new rules. Nevertheless, the year 2018 promises growth, especially in segments like affordable luxury, co-working spaces as well as tier-2 cities.
The policy changes and key measures such as the Real Estate Regulation and Development Act (RERA), REIT, the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Demonetisation, the Benami Transaction Act and infrastructure status to affordable housing, which were implemented in the last two years, will start showing their positive effects in the coming three to five years. This is the general belief in the market, despite the initial hiccups. Investors, consumers and businesses – everyone will continue to invest in the Indian real estate sector in 2018.
Builders who maintain transparency, honesty and don’t stretch themselves debt-wise, will continue to thrive in the market. In the coming years, developers will have to focus on streamlining their professional practices and be prompt in addressing the customers’ issues and concerns. The policy initiatives have empowered the buyers with better knowledge and the builders will have to deliver what they promise. Another thing that the builders will have to concentrate on is research. With the implementation of the new rules, builders will be able to sell a project provided it is priced and located right and it is offered to the right customers/market. An elaborate research would be required before launching and selling a project.
The focus in 2018 will be on the execution of projects. To save themselves from RERA penalties, developers will go for smaller projects or split large projects into phases. They will have to concentrate on completing their existing projects rather than launching new ones. This would result in a good supply of properties this year. Many joint ventures and joint developments will be seen in the Indian real estate market. Smaller players will find it difficult to operate in the changed scenario and are expected to be taken over by the larger players.
Affordable luxury will be a key segment in the coming years. Projects with some aspirational value attached to them are expected to find more buyers in 2018. Tier-2 cities will see more demand for commercial real estate, particularly office spaces. The cost of doing business is increasing in the metros, forcing companies to look out for other locations in tier-2 cities.
Although, the changed market scenario may seem confusing at the moment, in the long run, it is expected to pan out good for the real estate sector. Only those developers who understand, accept and devise strategies to tide over these changed market dynamics will be successful in 2018.